Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Batsheva Dori-Carlier

NEVE SHALOM, SEPTEMBER 2014

Under an olive tree in Neve Shalom* it’s impossible
to write “olive tree” without murdering some dove it’s impossible to write
“Neve Shalom” without entering into a war.
It’s impossible to say “I saw a prickly pear bush this morning
on the way to meditation” without quarreling with the thorns
that words send beyond their stone walls, ours,
whose olive tree is this and why is each leaf so significant, stuck in my mouth
like the bitter word of the war that I didn’t start and I can’t end.
The war in my head rages also under the olive tree and the chirping birds
and the falling olives of September,
a dark green plastic chair, the grass, palm trees, the hills before me,
the muffled sound of cars, the sparrow pausing near my feet,
awe at the harmonies of shade over the lawn breathing around me
in a tolerant rhythm as usual, the law of entwined trees,
a hush like a distillation of Torah law*. 
Friends sit sheltered by sheets of paper, pens buzz with thought,
labor concealed in silence, determined that the world continue to turn on its axis.

I want to say more now about beauty:
beauty is the six letters I’m writing now.
Here a woman sits under the vine of her words
and under the fig tree* of this very moment, at the moment
that a ripe date severs from a palm tree and strikes the ground.

נוה שלום, ספטמבר 2014

נוה שלום, ספטמבר 2014

תַּחַת עֵץ הַזַּיִת בְּנָוֶה שָׁלוֹם בִּלְתִּי אֶפְשָׁרִי
לִכְתֹּב עֵץ זַיִת מִבְּלִי לַהֲרֹג אֵיזוֹ יוֹנָה בִּלְתִּי אֶפְשָׁרִי לִכְתֹּב
נָוֶה-שָׁלוֹם מִבְּלִי לְהַכְנִיס מִלְחָמָה.
 בִּלְתִּי אֶפְשָׁרִי לוֹמַר: רָאִיתִי שִׂיחַ סָבְּרֶסִים הַיּוֹם בַּבֹּקֶר
בְּדֶרֶךְ לַמֶּדִיטַצְיָה מִבְּלִי לְהִסְתַּכְסֵךְ עִם הַקּוֹצִים
שֶׁהַמִּלִּים שׁוֹלְחוֹת מִבַּעַד לְגֶדֶר הָאֶבֶן שֶׁלָּהֶם, שֶׁלָּנוּ, שֶׁל מִי
עֵץ הַזַּיִת הַזֶּה וְלָמָּה כָּל עָלֶה הָרֶה מַשְׁמָעוּת וְנִתְחָב בְּפִי כְּמִלָּה מְרִירָה
שֶׁל מִלְחָמָה שֶׁלֹּא הִתְחַלְתִּי וְלֹא אֲסַיֵּם. הַמִּלְחָמָה בְּרָאשִׁי
סוֹעֶרֶת גַּם תַּחַת עֵץ הַזַּיִת וְצִיּוּץ הַצִּפֳּרִים וְהַזֵּיתִים הַנּוֹשְׁרִים שֶׁל סֶפְּטֶמְבֶּר,
כִּסֵּא פְּלַסְטִיק יָרֹק כֵּהֶה, הַדֶּשֶׁא, עֲצֵי הַדֶּקֶל, הַגְּבָעוֹת הַמֻּנָּחוֹת לְפָנַי,
קוֹלוֹתֵיהֵן הַמְטוּשְׁטָשִׁים שֶׁל הַמְּכוֹנִיּוֹת, הַדְּרוֹר שֶׁמִּשְׁתַּהֶה לְיַד רַגְלִי,
הַהִשְׁתָּאוּת מְמִצְלוֹלֵי הַצֵּל בַּמִּדְשָׁאָה הַמִתְנָשֶׁמֶת סְבִיבִי בְּמִקְצָב סַבְלָנִי כְּתָמִיד,
חֹק הָעֵצִים הַשְּׁלוּבִים, דְּמָמָה כְּמוֹ תּוֹרָה עַל רֶגֶל עֵץ אַחַת.
חֲבֵרִים יוֹשְׁבִים מְכוּנָפִים בְּדַפִּים, זִמְזוּם הַמַּחְשָׁבוֹת בָּעֵטִים,
הֶעָמַל הַסָּמוּי בַּשֶּׁקֶט, בִּנְחִישׁוּת שֶׁהַכֹּל יַמְשִׁיךְ לִיסוֹב עַל צִירוֹ.

אֲנִי רוֹצָה לְהַרְחִיב עַכְשָׁו אֶת הַדִּבּוּר עַל הַיוֹפִי:
יוֹפִי הוּא אַרְבַּע אוֹתִיּוֹת שֶׁאֲנִי כּוֹתֶבֶת.
הִנֵּה אִשָּׁה יוֹשֶׁבֶת תַּחַת גּוֹפְנָת מִלּוֹתֶיהָ
וְתַחַת תֵּאֱנַת הָרֶגַע הַזֶּה, בְּזֶה הָרֶגַע
תָּמָר בַּשֵּׁל נִתָּק מֵעֵץ הַדֶּקֶל וְנֶחְבָּט בַּאֲדָמָה.
 
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NEVE SHALOM, SEPTEMBER 2014

Under an olive tree in Neve Shalom* it’s impossible
to write “olive tree” without murdering some dove it’s impossible to write
“Neve Shalom” without entering into a war.
It’s impossible to say “I saw a prickly pear bush this morning
on the way to meditation” without quarreling with the thorns
that words send beyond their stone walls, ours,
whose olive tree is this and why is each leaf so significant, stuck in my mouth
like the bitter word of the war that I didn’t start and I can’t end.
The war in my head rages also under the olive tree and the chirping birds
and the falling olives of September,
a dark green plastic chair, the grass, palm trees, the hills before me,
the muffled sound of cars, the sparrow pausing near my feet,
awe at the harmonies of shade over the lawn breathing around me
in a tolerant rhythm as usual, the law of entwined trees,
a hush like a distillation of Torah law*. 
Friends sit sheltered by sheets of paper, pens buzz with thought,
labor concealed in silence, determined that the world continue to turn on its axis.

I want to say more now about beauty:
beauty is the six letters I’m writing now.
Here a woman sits under the vine of her words
and under the fig tree* of this very moment, at the moment
that a ripe date severs from a palm tree and strikes the ground.

NEVE SHALOM, SEPTEMBER 2014

Under an olive tree in Neve Shalom* it’s impossible
to write “olive tree” without murdering some dove it’s impossible to write
“Neve Shalom” without entering into a war.
It’s impossible to say “I saw a prickly pear bush this morning
on the way to meditation” without quarreling with the thorns
that words send beyond their stone walls, ours,
whose olive tree is this and why is each leaf so significant, stuck in my mouth
like the bitter word of the war that I didn’t start and I can’t end.
The war in my head rages also under the olive tree and the chirping birds
and the falling olives of September,
a dark green plastic chair, the grass, palm trees, the hills before me,
the muffled sound of cars, the sparrow pausing near my feet,
awe at the harmonies of shade over the lawn breathing around me
in a tolerant rhythm as usual, the law of entwined trees,
a hush like a distillation of Torah law*. 
Friends sit sheltered by sheets of paper, pens buzz with thought,
labor concealed in silence, determined that the world continue to turn on its axis.

I want to say more now about beauty:
beauty is the six letters I’m writing now.
Here a woman sits under the vine of her words
and under the fig tree* of this very moment, at the moment
that a ripe date severs from a palm tree and strikes the ground.
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